On the International Day of the Volunteer The People’s Project manager Maxym Ryabokon, along with other famous Ukrainian volunteers, gave an interview for the ‘New Time’, in which he shared the stories from his life and the volunteer background.
– There were a lot of positive cases during the time of my volunteering. The best example, in my opinion, is the testing of the aircraft that worth 1,000,000 UAH. Just imagine, that you stand on the ground, and somewhere above the clouds at an altitude above 2000 meters is flying the machine, that can radically change the course of the war. Approaching the ground, the plane makes a loop and fly 15 meters above the ground. In moments like this you cross your heart, clench the teeth and think about the worse. But the rigidity of the airplane’s construction maintain the overloading and successfully go for final approach. At this moment the joy overflows you, and you realize that the team spent a year not in vain. Actually, the drones like that successfully perform real combat tasks, saving not only people’s lives, but also the integrity of the territory of Ukraine.
– Actually, we were only once the step away from death during the visit to the Marines, when the shelling started. You do not think about fear then. You try to concentrate and start thinking few steps ahead. I do not quite understand the people, who come to the front line, and don’t bring anything of the equipment, that can really help the guys. Such people are driven by the thirst of fame and of presence at the area of glory. I do not need fame like that. We do everything quietly, not for the popularity. Only occasionally we visit boys and bring the stuff, that can actually save them. During this 2.5 years of volunteering I already proved myself everything i needed to.
– The most difficult stages in volunteering, that we have passed are reporting, transparency and consistency. It was not easy to build those things. We have spent months of sleepless nights, but the result pleases us. It makes it possible to help the army, the kids and the wounded every day. Now we are gradually moving to the another level of the volunteering, where we try to develop an army not only technically, but also professionally. We try to support the medical development. Now we have some projects in the process of development, that take almost all our free time. But they will be both shocking and admiring.
– There are moment that exhaust emotionally a lot. We worry for each fighter, who we had to deal with. We disagree to see the Ukrainian army as the faceless amorphous mass. Each brigade, battalion or unit are considered as the specific faces of the guys we helped. Every lack of support, each injustice towards them we perceive as the parents of a child, who got hurt by someone. Every disaster that happens to them we perceive as a personal tragedy. It’s tough.
– But also something pleasant that happens to them you sincerely perceive the same way. When the soldier gets an award, or when he achieves some successes. We always take it with honor and pride.
– Despite the fact that the issue of material and technical support for the defenders of Ukraine at the front line is still relevant, the vector of the need shifted a little bit. The active struggle is now a little bit quieter, and now there is an urgent need for the rehabilitation of the wounded soldiers. The life is saved, the main injuries has been healed, and now the question is what to do with the consequences of the serious injuries? How to treat something that is not treated with the help of the medicine in Ukraine? What to do with the completely destroyed limbs? The soldier with such injury have to be somehow and somewhere treated or got injured limb amputated, or fixed with the prosthesis and turned onto disabled person? All these issues we are trying to solve now. Many of the institutions act on our side, but some specialized key agencies cut all our initiatives at the root. No one publicly explains why it is this happening. And we have neither power nor time to sink into the backstage struggle.
– We do not want to just solve specific problems all the time. We want to change the country and the society for the better, so the problems like those simply no longer arise.
– When the war is over, it is desirable for us to develop the philanthropy in Ukraine. Unfortunately, non of us was engaged into this before. Everyone just lived his life. We were the IT, marketers etc. Now it is vice versa. We were able to change the aim, to understand the problem areas and solve many successful cases. So I can proudly say, that after the war our team will come to a new level, and will involve many other charitable organizations, that want to develop, and not just to collect money for the temporary solutions of the problems. The main indicator of the end of the war for me will be the launch of more than 20 social projects, that are aimed to solve the problems of civil people. It’s really cool. And then I plan to continue my own business, which, unfortunately, is in a very poor condition right now.